Interested in Hunting? Fishing? Not Sure How To Get Started?
Through its Forever Wild Families program, the Wyoming Game and Fish Department (WGFD) and program partners provide a safe environment and patient mentors for those with little to no previous hunting or fishing experience. Participants who desire to recreate outdoors learn skills to do so safely, ethically and (eventually) independently.
In its second year in Cody, Forever Wild Families has a full class for 2014-2015 and will continue to accept applications for the class of 2015-2016. Please contact Tara Hodges at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information about the Forever Wild Families program in the Cody area.
In its first year in Laramie, Forever Wild Families is full and no longer accepting applications for the class of 2014-2015. Please contact Robin Kepple at email@example.com more information about the Forever Wild Families program in the Laramie area.
In its third year in Lander, Forever Wild Families is now accepting applications for its 2015-2016 class starting in the spring of 2015. Please contact Rene Schell at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information about the Forever Wild Families program in the Lander area.
Please contact Tasha Sorensen at email@example.com for statewide information on the program including volunteer/mentor and partnership/sponsorship opportunities.
The Forever Wild Families program harnesses the power of family and community to develop new anglers and hunters. The program not only introduces people to angling and hunting, it creates lifelong anglers and hunters who understand and support the agency’s work.
Rather than focusing solely on youth (who may not have the support of their families), Wyoming’s goal is to link angling and hunting to adult motivations so the youth who participate have parent, mentor or guardian support. Having a built-in support system—within families and communities—is critical to a new hunter or angler’s decision to continue hunting or fishing. According to the Wildlife Management Institute, the Forever Wild Families program is the best example nationwide of a hunter and angler recruitment and retention program. In the Forever Wild Families program, 92percent of first-year participants bought fishing and/or hunting licenses the following year.
The Forever Wild Families program offers customized outings to those with limited experience.Over the course of a year, families participate in experiential learning sessions designed to help them develop greater skills, interest and awareness in fishing, hunting and the outdoors. The key to success lies in offering families multiple opportunities to experience various hunting- and fishing-related activities. In the program’s first three years, participants have had the opportunity to learn about: fly fishing, spin fishing, ice fishing, fish identification, ecology, fish stocking, hatchery operations, fly-tying and lure making, fisheries and wildlife research, survival, camping, backpacking, GPS,map and compass, wildlife identification and tracks, wildlife biology, wholistic and wellness aspects of hunting, hunting techniques and tactics,hunting on private and public land, applying for limited-draw licenses,field-dressing game, processing game, cooking game, recreating safely in areas with large carnivores, hunter education certification, shotgun, rifle and pistol shooting sports, upland game hunting, small game hunting (rabbits and squirrels), big game hunting (deer, elk, antelope), trapping, wild turkey hunting and waterfowl hunting. In their second year, participant families are paired with mentors who help them explore more thoroughly fishing, hunting and other outdoor pursuits.
Forever Wild Families would like to thank the following program partners:
North Platte Walleyes Unlimited, Hornady Mfg.,Sierra Trading Post, Wyoming Wildlife Federation, University of Wyoming Extension, Allwayz Manufacturing, Federal Ammunition, Wind River Mountain Outfitters, Wind River Outdoor Company, Wind River Troutfitters, Appaloosa Broadcasting, Pioneer Printing, Guns and Gear, Muley Fanatic Foundation, Rocky Mountain Discount Sports and Vortex Optics. Grants have been received from:Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies, Wyoming Wildlife-The Foundation:Wyoming Governor’s Big Game License Coalition; Wyoming Wildlife Federation and the Weatherby Foundation.